To date, through their Employment Academies, 289 learners have secured real employment on release, a further 43 have secured work placements on release, and 1,003 have engaged in real job interviews pre-release and 80 post-release.
The Milton Keynes College Employment Academy is different to traditional prison education; developing partnerships with employers, the Local Authority, and other specialist training providers, before implementing the curriculum by listening to employer feedback and using government data sources. This enables the College to identify where jobs currently exist and which occupational areas are likely to see growth. They can then tailor qualifications to meet today's job markets and train offenders to fill any skill gaps.
The Academy aims to develop a number of key skills, including:
- Self-motivation and commitment
- Positive attitude
- Willingness to learn
- Ability to multi task
- Demonstrate reading, writing and numeracy skills
The Academy helps offenders who are keen to develop these skills whilst in custody and provides them with a network of support from custody through the gate. This involves developing their education and skills, as well as working on any personal barriers which may preclude them from entering the job market.
The Milton Keynes College Employment Academy works hard to support offenders to access real work opportunities in prison and to then re-enter the employment market upon their release.
Greggs Academy learner: "Having Greggs involved in the Milton Keynes College Academy has given me hope that not all employers will judge me on my past offence and that I do have a second chance."